Thursday, February 21, 2008

I drink it up!

My Oscar Picks

In anticipation of Sunday's Oscars, here are my thoughts and predictions for some of the major categories:

Best Supporting Actress
  • Cate Blanchett, I'm Not There
  • Ruby Dee, American Gangster
  • Saoirse Ronan, Antonement
  • Amy Ryan, Gone, Baby Gone
  • Tilda Swinton, Michael Clayton
I have not seen I'm Not There or American Gangster (though A.G. just arrived from Netflix today), but from what I have seen and heard, Cate Blanchett does a great job and Ruby Dee is in A.G. for 4 minutes. Saoirse Ronan creeped me out. Amy Ryan was wonderful. But the performance that stands out the most to me is Tilda Swinton, who truly captivated in Michael Clayton. But I am going to go against the popular predictions.

Should Win: Tilda Swinton
Will Win: Amy Ryan

Best Supporting Actor
  • Casey Affleck, Assassination of Jesse James
  • Javier Bardem, No Country for Old Men
  • Philip Seymour Hoffman, Charlie Wilson's War
  • Hal Holbrook, Into the Wild
  • Tom Wilkinson, Michael Clayton
In the reviews I wrote for each of these great films, I singled out the actors for their excellent performances. Casey Affleck captured the creepy stalker persona, and Hal Holbrook brought me to tears. But who are we kidding? Only one person can and should win this award.

Should Win: Javier Bardem
Will Win: Javier Bardem

Best Actress
  • Cate Blanchett, Elizabeth: The Golden Age
  • Julie Christie, Away from Her
  • Marion Cotillard, La Vie En Rose
  • Laura Linney, The Savages
  • Ellen Page, Juno
This is a very tough category this year. I loved Julie Christie's moving performance, and she seems to be the favorite. Marion Cotillard truly transformed into Edith Piaf, but did anyone see this movie? And I just loved Ellen Page. But will the Academy go this way?

Should Win: I cannot decide
Will Win: Julie Christie

Best Actor
  • George Clooney, Michael Clayton
  • Daniel Day-Lewis, There Will Be Blood
  • Johnny Depp, Sweeney Todd
  • Tommy Lee Jones, In the Valley of Elah
  • Viggo Mortensen, Eastern Promises
Is there even a doubt? It is only one of the best performances ever.

Should Win: Daniel Day-Leiws
Will Win: Daniel Day-Lewis

Best Adapted Screenplay
  • Christopher Hampton, Atonement
  • Sarah Poley, Away from Her
  • Ronald Harwood, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
  • Joel Coen & Ethan Coen, No Country for Old Men
  • Paul Thomas Anderson, There Will Be Blood
Once again, I love the fact that my favorite filmmakers are competing against each other.

Should Win: The Coen Brothers
Will Win: The Coen Brothers

Best Original Screenplay
  • Diablo Cody, Juno
  • Nancy Oliver, Lars and the Real Girl
  • Tony Gilroy, Michael Clayton
  • Brad Bird, Jan Pinkava & Jim Capobianco, Ratatouille
  • Tamara Jenkins, The Savages
I have not seen Lars & the Real Girl or Ratatouille, and I really loved Michael Clayton, but despite the current backlash against the dialogue, I think all signs point one way here:

Should Win: Juno
Will Win: Juno

Achievement in Cinematography
  • The Assassination of Jesse James
  • Atonement
  • The Diving Bell and The Butterfly
  • No Country for Old Men
  • There Will Be Blood
Another film I wanted to see but didn't is The Diving Bell and The Butterfly, and I hear it is something special. Nonetheless, this category worries me a bit. There Will Be Blood was cinematographic behemoth, and Atonement was lovely. But Roger Deakins is one of the best, having shot almost all of the Coen Brothers' films. This year, he is nominated for No Country for Old Men and for The Assassination of Jesse James, which is a gorgeous and complicatedly filmed movie. I fear he may split his own vote. Nevertheless . . .

Should Win: Roger Deakins, The Assassination of Jesse James
Will Win: Roger Deakins, No Country for Old Men

Best Director
  • Julian Schnabel, The Diving Bell and the Butterfly
  • Jason Reitman, Juno
  • Tony Gilroy, Michael Clayton
  • Joel Coen, Ethan Coen, No Country for Old Men
  • Paul Thomas Anderson, There Will Be Blood
Tony Gilroy's debut was quite excellent, and you all know how I feel about P.T.A. But this is the Coens' year.

Should Win: The Coen Brothers
Will Win: The Coen Brothers

Best Picture
  • Atonement
  • Juno
  • Michael Clayton
  • No Country for Old Men
  • There Will Be Blood
I will be so happy if, for the second year in a row, the picture that I think is the best of the year actually wins the Best Picture Oscar. And I think it will happen this year.

Should Win: No Country for Old Men
Will Win: No Country for Old Men

Liveblog on Sunday.


At 1:04 AM, Blogger undulatingorb posited...

I too think that No Country for Old Men should take Best Picture, but I'm thinking if there is an upset, which is distinctly possible given that this is the Oscars, maybe Juno will take it, and you know, I'll be happy with that.

At 10:48 AM, Blogger scott w posited...

I love this time of year, and the subsequent Oscar posts. Unfortunately, I am unable to see most of these films, but the information you provide is very helpful in creating lists of films to see in the future. And as always, I am pulling for Hoffman to win everything. Everything.

At 12:27 AM, Blogger John posited...

I just watched Gone, Baby Gone. That movie was solid. I'm surprised Affleck didn't get the nod for that instead of The Coward.


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